Snowe Job

Former Maine Senator Olympia Snowe came to town to advise the people to embrace comity, collaboration, and compromise in their chosen political candidates:

“You need to reward those who are willing to cross the political aisle,” said Snowe, a Maine Republican. “You have the power of social media to create online communities. Use it.

“The forces of division are well organized. …But the majority of Americans want their government to work. It needs to work for all of us.…We have to restore the integrity of the process in Washington.”

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“When I started, it was important to have credible information and data..…It was all about teamwork and collaboration… But in today’s environment, you don’t have that kind of process. They’re not talking about facts. They’re talking about messaging and political talking points.…We’re on the road to nowhere these days.”

Impressive words.  I’d have been more impressed had she done the responsible thing and point out it was her own party that lost the plot.  She could also have mentioned her own role in the mess, but hey, books aren’t going to sell themselves…

 

Tears Of The Villagers

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What is the source of the Village’s anguish?  The fact that they’re dealing with someone who is infinitely smarter than they are:

MODERATOR: Jon Karl from ABC News.

Q: Mr. President, thank you. In China, in Syria, in Egypt and now in Russia we’ve seen you make strong statements, issue warnings that have been ignored. Are you concerned that America’s influence in the world, your influence in the world is on the decline? And in light of recent developments, do you think Mitt Romney had a point when he said that Russia is America’s biggest geopolitical foe? If not Russia, who?

And Mr. Prime Minister, do you think these sanctions will change Vladimir Putin’s calculation, will cause him to back down? And do you see there’s a — where do you see a Russian red line, where if they go any further, if they go into eastern Ukraine, into Moldova, where options beyond sanctions have to be considered? Thank you.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, Jonathan, I think if the premise of the question is that whenever the United States objects to an action and other countries don’t immediately do exactly what we want, that that’s been the norm, that would pretty much erase most of 20th century history.

I think that there’s a distinction between us being very clear about what we think is an appropriate action, what we stand for, what principles we believe in, versus what is, I guess, implied in the question, that we should engage in some sort of military action to prevent something.

You know, the truth of the matter is, is that the world’s always been messy. And what the United States has consistently been able to do, and we continue to be able to do, is to mobilize the international community around a set of principles and norms. And where our own self-defense may not be involved, we may not act militarily. That does not mean that we don’t steadily push against those forces that would violate those principles and ideals that we care about.

So yes, you’re right, Syria — the Syrian civil war is not solved. And yet Syria has never been more isolated.

With respect to the situation in Ukraine, we have not gone to war with Russia. I think there’s a significant precedent to that in the past. That does not mean that Russia’s not isolated. In fact, Russia is far more isolated in this instance than it was five years ago with respect to Georgia and more isolated than it was certainly during most of the 20th century when it was part of the Soviet Union.

The point is that there are always going to be bad things that happen around the world, and the United States, as the most powerful nation in the world, understandably is looked to for solutions to those problems.

And what we have to make sure we’re doing are that we are putting all elements of our power behind finding solutions, working with our international partners, standing up for those principles and ideals in a clear way.

There are going to be moments where military action is appropriate. There are going to be some times where that’s not in the interests — national security interests of the United States or some of our partners, but that doesn’t mean that we’re not going to continue to make the effort, or speak clearly about what we think is right and wrong. And that’s what we’ve done.

With respect to Mr. Romney’s assertion that Russia’s our number- one geopolitical foe, the truth of the matter is that, you know, America’s got a whole lot of challenges. Russia is a regional power that is threatening some of its immediate neighbors — not out of strength, but out of weakness.

Ukraine has been a country in which Russia had enormous influence for decades — since the breakup of the Soviet Union. And you know, we have considerable influence on our neighbors. We generally don’t need to invade them in order to have a strong cooperative relationship with them. The fact that Russia felt compelled to go in militarily and lay bare these violations of international law indicates less influence, not more.

And so my response then continues to be what I believe today, which is Russia’s actions are a problem. They don’t pose the number- one national security threat to the United States. I continue to be much more concerned when it comes to our security with the prospect of a nuclear weapon going off in Manhattan, which is part of the reason why the United States, showing its continued international leadership, has organized a forum over the last several years that’s been able to help eliminate that threat in a consistent way.

And with that, we have another great rejoinder to the thousands of Villagers, war cheerleaders, NeoConfederates, profiteers, America-is-in-decline-ers (as long as that one is in office, that is), and other sundry jackasses: Be still, an adult is talking.

Uncivil Defense

barney_fife

Once again, the agency charged with protecting the president shows a (no longer) stunning lack of professionalism among some of its members:

Three Secret Service agents responsible for protecting President Obama in Amsterdam this week were sent home and put on administrative leave Sunday after going out for a night of drinking, according to three people familiar with the incident. One of the agents was found drunk and passed out in a hotel hallway, the people said.

The hotel staff alerted the U.S. Embassy in the Netherlands after finding the unconscious agent Sunday morning, a day before Obama arrived in the country, according to two of the people. The embassy then alerted Secret Service managers on the presidential trip, which included the agency’s director, Julia Pierson.

This, on the heels of the infamous Cartegena incident in 2012, raises some disturbing questions – questions that should be answered with all deliberate speed:

  • Why did these agents feel free to do this after rules were tightened after Cartegena specifically to prevent this behavior?
  • Is there a problem within the Counter Assault Team (not to mention within the Secret Service as a whole) with regards to this particular president?
  • What specific steps can be taken to insure that this never happens again?

This incident is damning, and should be of concern to everyone regardless of party.  We’ll see…

Risen Like A Phoenix. A Really, Really Stupid Phoenix.

Just when I’d sworn off reading anything concerning anybody with the last name Palin, here comes TBogg to draw me back in:

“When we last saw Sarah she was making announcements on her ShoutyFace page about making announcements on her ShoutyFace page about doin’ some heavy vettin’, some hard homeworkin’ , and being very discernmental about the folks she wants her fans to vote for,  if the good Lord is willin’ and the Hoverounds start up.

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But is that enough Sarah Palin for God’s Chosen Country?

Actually, it’s probably too much, but tough titties America, because Sarah Palin is going to get her own teevee network channel called Rogue TV and it will be in your cable box in your house and there is nothing you can do about it.”

The Boggster is in rare form as he theorizes about a channel lineup:

“And what kind of delightful programming  might we expect on this new addition to the other eight-hundred channels you never watch??

  • ‘America’s Top Meth Chefs’
  • ‘The Big Bang Theory Behind The Circle K’
  • ‘So You Think Bristol Can’t Dance, Well Screw You, She Does Just Fine, C’Mere Sweetie, Don’t Listen To Them’
  • ‘How I Met Your Mother’ hosted by Glen Rice
  • ‘Dr., Who Knocked My Daughter Up This Time?’

Something like that…”

Do yourself a favor and go read the whole thing – it’s as thorough a takedown of Grifterella as you’ll ever see.  Also, how sad is this:

 (TLC’s parent company, Discovery Communications, is an investor in Tapp.)

Idiocracy was a documentary, evidently…